David Hovhannisyan and Luz San Miguel. Photo: Rick Brodzeller
“Before you can inspire with emotion, you must be swamped by it yourself. Before you can move their tears, your own must flow. To convince them, you must yourself believe.” ~ Winston Churchill
About Dr. Juergens
As a psychologist, Dr. Juergens knows that passion drives artistic expression, allows the dancer to create beauty and bring an audience to the peaks of emotional experience. Passionate artistic expression breaks through others’ emotional walls and unites dancer and audience in a glorious sharing of selves and story as portrayed through movement.
When passion becomes diluted - by self-doubt, by stress, by relationship concerns, by communication difficulties with partners - dancers may retreat within themselves and withdraw from the emotional connection with their audience. Performance becomes compromised as artists cannot engage emotionally with an audience when they themselves are suffering. Dr. Juergens focuses on restoring that connection, gently guiding the dancer back to the passion and to the audience who waits for it.
Injuries to dancers also force them away from the artist-audience intimacy and can lead to loneliness, grief, and identity confusion. As careers end, dancers grieve the loss of their primary mode of communication, of their only-ever occupation, and of what many believe to be their uniqueness as individuals. With Dr. Juergens’ support, dancers can create meaningful lives after dance, finding new parts of themselves to value and new passions to pursue.
Dr. Juergens is on the faculty at the Wisconsin School of Professional Psychology where she serves as an assistant professor in their clinical psychology program. She also holds a clinical faculty appointment at the Medical College of Wisconsin in the department of Orthopaedic Surgery. She has a private practice in Milwaukee and is a member of the American Psychological Association, Wisconsin Psychological Association, and the International Association for Dance Medicine and Science.
Kristin Juergens, Psy. D. is a licensed psychologist in the state of Wisconsin. While working full time as a licensed athletic trainer, Dr. Juergens studied at the Wisconsin School of Professional Psychology from 1997 - 2005 and received both her Masters and Doctoral degree in clinical psychology. During her 25 year career in sports medicine, she had the privilege of treating olympic, world class, collegiate, high school, and professional athletes. Prior to pursuing her full time career in clinical psychology, she served the Milwaukee Ballet for nine years. The emotional impact of long term injury recovery, performance anxiety, and bereavement issues around career loss and transition are her primary clinical interests and areas of expertise with performing artists.
I never thought the unspoken art of dance could convey such deep passions and depth of character until I had the privilege of working along side internationally acclaimed artistic director, Michael Pink. His work challenges the artist and audience to move beyond the superficial perceptions of dance. No audience will ever care about or believe in an artist’s performance until he or she is willing to demonstrate emotional vulnerability and the ability to be true to oneself.
It is my goal to help all dancers reach and sustain their full potential as performing artists. I believe that a balanced lifestyle that focuses on physical, emotional, and mental health provides artists with the skills and resources to cope with the diverse demands and stressors of a professional dance career.
Dance Psychology Services
The following services are available to the artists of the Milwaukee Ballet Company, the Milwaukee Ballet II program and the students studying at the Milwaukee Ballet School. All individual services are provided in an office setting apart from the ballet studio environment to ensure the necessary confidentiality and privacy. Periodic lectures on various dance related topics are presented at the ballet studios and are available to artists, students and parents. Consultation services are also available for the artistic staff and designated company support staff.
・Managing Performance Anxiety
・Support and Encouragement Through Injury Recovery
・Balancing Life and Work
・Progressive Relaxation Training
・Positive Visualization Training
・Coping Skills Training
・The Pas De Deux: Communicating With Your Partner
・Assertiveness Training and Conflict Resolution
・Career Transition Concerns and Planning
・Overcoming Fear of Emotional Vulnerability
・Positive Self-Concept and Self-Esteem
Individual consultation is provided to artistic
staff and school faculty who want to discuss
general concerns or who are seeking information
about community resources available to professional
artists or those pursuing professional or
academic careers in dance.
Lecture series and panel forum discussions are offered
periodically to address various dance, healthy lifestyle,
and performance related topics. These are presented by
psychologists, physicians and other dance medicine